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Ex-firefighter who threatened to kill black couple indicted on 7 felony counts

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The former Savannah firefighter who went on a drunken, racist rampage in an Applebee’s restaurant and menaced a black couple with a gun has been indicted on seven felony counts of aggravated assault.

Savannah Now reported Thursday morning that former Capt. Barry Arnold — Savannah’s 2014 Firefighter of the Year — was indicted by a Chatham County grand jury for attacking and threatening to kill Marquist Curtis and Amber Phillips on October of 2015.

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“Marquist and Amber are glad this has finally been done,” said Will Claiborne, Curtis and Phillips’ attorney to WSAV. “Frustrated that it took so long. They’re happy to finally see the process move forward. They are one step closer to obtaining some justice to what happened to them and are looking forward to their day in court.”

Arnold is currently charged with 7 felonies: Two counts of aggravated assault, two counts of possession of a firearm, public drunkenness, simple battery and disorderly conduct.

Raw Story reported Wednesday that the four misdemeanor charges originally filed against Arnold had been quietly dropped. The victims and their supporters thought that Arnold’s race and connections to city government had ensured that prosecutor Meg Heap and the district attorney’s office were dragging their feet with regards to the case.

On a Friday night in October, 2015, Curtis and Williams found themselves threatened with murder during a racially charged run-in with a drunken Arnold. After Arnold violently attacked Curtis inside the restaurant, the altercation spilled outside, where — brandishing a gun and his fire department badge — Arnold told the victims he could murder them and get away with it under the law.

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Claiborne said that when Curtis and Phillips tried to flee back inside to get away, they found that restaurant workers had locked the door.

“If you have a drunken virulent racist in your establishment you have an obligation to everyone there to make that establishment safe,” the attorney said.

The restaurant is liable for its handling of the incident, Claiborne said, and arresting officers on the night of the crime only charged Arnold with four misdemeanors and did not cite him for attempting to drive away from the scene while intoxicated.

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“Law enforcement on the scene should’ve appropriately charged Mr. Arnold. He should’ve been taken immediately to jail,” Claiborne said. “He should’ve been booked on felony charges. If anyone else, particularly an African American, had committed these acts that individual would be put directly in jail and probably would still be there.”

No trial date is currently set for Arnold.


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‘Impeachment time’: Conservative columnist says Pelosi must end her caution if Trump-Ukraine scandal is true

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Conservative columnist Max Boot, like fellow anti-Trump conservative Rick Wilson, had long supported House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's (D-CA) cautious approach when it comes to impeaching President Donald Trump.

But in his latest column, Boot argues that Pelosi cannot simply ignore the latest Trump scandal that involves allegedly strong-arming the Ukrainian government to help him dig up dirt on former Vice President Joe Biden.

"If the new scandal involving President Trump and Ukraine is as bad as it seems -- and that is, of course, a very big if at this early stage -- the House will have no choice but to impeach, consequences be damned," he writes.

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Pelosi warns Trump ‘stepping into a dangerous minefield’ if Ukraine allegations are true

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House Speaker Nancy Pelosi warned President Donald Trump was "stepping into a dangerous minefield" if he had offered U.S. military aid to Ukraine in exchange for damaging information about Joe Biden.

The California Democrat said the administration was violating federal law by blocking a whistleblower complaint against the president from congressional review, and she said Trump and his acting director of national intelligence must end their "stonewalling."

"If the President has done what has been alleged, he is stepping into a dangerous minefield with serious repercussions for his Administration and our democracy," Pelosi said.

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‘This is deadly serious’: House Judiciary member warns Trump’s whistleblower stonewalling is impeachable

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A Democratic member of the House Judiciary Committee warned that President Donald Trump's refusal to release a whistleblower complaint against him could be an impeachable offense.

An intelligence official filed the complaint last month, which the inspector general recommended for congressional oversight, but acting director of national intelligence Joseph Maguire has refused to turn over at the Justice Department's recommendation.

Rep. David Cicilline (D-RI), a senior member of the judiciary committee where impeachment would begin, warned the president to follow the law -- or else.

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